Saturday, December 31, 2011


Every year I vow I will wrap the presents ahead of time and every year I put it off until Christmas Eve.  Jonathan is a good sport and helped me out.

So we were up late and the kids up early.  Matthew, Melissa, and Corinna were all up around 6.  Surprisingly Isaac slept in till 7.  While Isaac slept, I prepared the Apfelpfannkuchen or German apple pancakes with cream (recipe below).  Matthew and Melissa decided that that ought to be a Christmas tradition after trying them at a German breakfast place in San Antonio 2 years ago.  M&M looted their stockings and jumped and danced around the house noisily until Isaac woke up. 

Melissa with her stocking loot.
(Notice the foaming bath soap, hair supplies, book, and crayons.  Santa is a practical elf.)
Matthew sorting the presents

Matthew admiring his dad's wrapping paper.  Jonathan's tradition is to use newspaper.  Upon questioning he replied, "You have your traditions, this one is mine.  Besides newspaper comes in pre-cut pages perfect for wrapping." 

Dad got in one last Chinese lesson before opening presents.

He's up!  And he was a bit puzzled by the excitement at first.  He quickly caught on. 

Melissa received a crystal (amethyst) necklace that she'd really wanted.

Licorice for me, from Matthew.  Wrapping paper for Corinna.  

A camera!

Star Wars Legos and a Lego idea book (and lego storage bins)

Grandpa and Corinna

Melissa bought Matthew a magic kit.  She knows her brother.  

We were thoroughly spoiled by our parents and siblings.  The children were delighted with their new treasures.  Thank you.

After opening presents, we dined on German Apple Pancakes with whipping cream.  Mmm.  Then Jonathan and Isaac tried to take Dad to the airport- but Jonathan already wrote about that adventure!

Since the car died right before church and we had no way of getting there, we opted to watch the First Presidency Christmas Message with the children instead.  It was a nice relaxed Christmas day and Matthew, Melissa, and Isaac had a lot of fun with their toys.  That evening Andrea and Jeremy hosted Christmas dinner and it was beautiful and delicious! 

Merry Christmas!

Apfelpfannkuchen (German Apple Pancakes)

You will need:

  • 4 eggs
  • 1/2 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
 (apple filling)
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup white sugar + 1 tbls
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  •  2 large Granny Smith apples - peeled, cored and sliced 

  1. In a large bowl, blend eggs, flour, baking powder, sugar and salt. Gradually mix in milk, stirring constantly. Add vanilla, melted butter and 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg.  Let the batter rest 30 minutes.
  2.  Preheat the oven to 425 F
  3. Melt butter in a 10 inch oven proof skillet (cast iron works well), brushing butter up on the sides of the pan. In a small bowl, combine 1/4 cup sugar, cinnamon and 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg. Sprinkle mixture over the butter. Line the pan with apple slices. Sprinkle remaining sugar over apples. Place pan over medium heat until the mixture bubbles, then gently pour the batter mixture over the apples. 
  4. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes at 425 F and then reduce heat to 375.  Bake an additional 10 minutes.  Whip cream to serve on top.  Enjoy!

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